Is Octopus High in Mercury? A Guide for Expectant Moms

A healthy pregnancy diet would uphold spectacular physical conditions for both expecting women and their growing babies.

Among thousands of cuisines, octopodes have yielded some primary concerns. Is octopus high in mercury levels?

Are they safe for pregnancy consumption? Our article will dive further into this issue.

Is Octopus High in Mercury?

Is Octopus High in Mercury

Does octopus have mercury? Yes, but the mercurous content in octopus is seen as “moderate” or even “low”, as per the EDF (Environmental Defense Fund). So you shouldn’t be alarmed about it.

What Is Mercury?

Mercury is a neurotoxic particle that poses a cumulative effect. Deadly neurobehavioural issues are a direct consequence of over-excessive mercurous exposure.

Some cases in point entail memory loss tremors, nerve abnormalities, heart disease risk, and even mortality.

All of us are susceptible to mercury poisoning. Nevertheless, pregnant women, whose weakened health paves the way for placenta penetration, are the most vulnerable.

And their barely developed fetuses are even more so, as per science tests.

Japanese experts revealed in 2018 that prenatal level of mercury exposure poses deathly risks to the psychomotor development of most babies, particularly males.

Hence, FAO and WHO recommended a tolerable daily intake of 3.9 micrograms of mercurous chlorides per kilogram.

What Are The Levels of Mercury in Octopodes?

Octopodes have always been a potential source of chemical pollutants, such as mercurous particles. And the specific levels appear to fluctuate across different findings.

For instance, during an intricate industrial boiling process, American scientists detected 0.09 milligrams of mercurous substances in a kilogram of octopodes in 2019.

Another similar research of the same year identified only 0.04 milligrams, claiming that the intake of octopodes did not substantially add to the weekly mercury exposure limit.

On the other hand, a German article presented in 2020 reported a surging amount of mercurous substances.

After an intense examination of ten canned products, it stated that the octopus mercury content exceeded 0.2 milligrams per kilo.

A specific number has not yet been concurred among researchers to this day. But overall, the common sentiment is that it falls into the moderate/low spectrum.

Despite all the myths, octopodes seem to have lower mercurous levels than we have anticipated.

Should Pregnant Women Consume Octopus during Pregnancy?

So can pregnant lady eat octopus then? Yes, but you’ll want to steer away from raw or uncooked octopus dishes.

As we just established, most octopodes fall under moderate and low mercurous levels, which is a notable improvement compared to other prevalent marine species.

Hence, most experts claim that diminutive consumption of common octopus poses no significant harm to internal functions and overall well-being, even for expectant moms.

They are more susceptible to viruses and toxicants than most people, yet eating octopus during pregnancy is not much of a problem. There are some cautions to guarantee utmost safety, though.

Your cooking procedures must comply with basic safety methods, for starters, which extract all pathogens associated with this kind of mollusk.

Secondly, digestion of more than 6 ounces per week is not encouraged.

Any quantity below that benchmark is more than sufficient, which eludes an overload of harmful particles without neglecting their equally significant health benefits.

Grilled or fresh octopus is alright, as long as the preparation is well-operated. Remember to slice the thickest portion in half and ensure the internal components are heated and fully cooked.

Last but not least, avoid ingesting raw octopus in pregnancy at all costs. These delicacies often harbor dangerous infections, parasites, and organisms.

In the worst-case scenarios, they cause severe diseases, plunged blood pressure, cancer risk, and irreparable pregnancy hassles.

Benefits of Octopus for Pregnant Women

Octopus and fish consumption (or any seafood during pregnancy) are excellent sources of nutritious foods.

These sections will further detail why octopodes play a critical role in a healthy diet.

Essential Nutrient Values for Your Babies

Not a great enthusiast for bananas or oranges? No worry, there are tons of other equally potassium-rich foods for consumption.

We are willing to bet octopodes never came to your mind as a potential substitute, but the following tidbits might give you a pleasant surprise.

Indeed, octopodes are a potent source of nutrients, particularly rich in vitamin B12, lean protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and calorie content.

These vitamins and minerals are all integrated into the consistent internal body system, sustaining the healthy growth of your babies.

That fact alone justifies a second glance at the meal!

Cancer Prevention

Here is a lesser-known fact: vitamin B12 deficiency increases breast cancer likelihood. Fortunately, high vitamin B12 rates in octopodes lend tremendous support for you to avoid this disaster.

Amino acid taurine in the tentacles also lowers the chance of other equally deathly cancer-related diseases.

If digested in an appropriate amount, the amino acid will serve as an astringent to safeguard you against minor side effects often associated with mercurous delicacies.

Otherwise, a portion larger than 6 ounces per week might take an unfavorable toll on your health. So be cautious!

Enhanced Brain Functions

Phosphorus is another prevalent nutrition in mollusks, which is particularly advantageous for the development of your brain.

It boosts cognitive functioning and promotes intellectual development, which keeps you in a rational and reinvigorated mood regardless of circumstances! 

And most importantly, thanks to the abundance of fatty acids, you are unlikely to suffer from depression, a common trauma seen in many pregnant mothers recently.

Magnesium also lends equal benefits, strengthening memories and your learning capabilities. Chronological disorders such as Alzheimer’s will always be far at bay.

Rapid Physical Recovery

It is common knowledge that women’s bodies suffer from tons of physical deterioration during prenatal care, such as skin wrinkling, back discomfort, and hip enlargement.

Though some scheduled exercises (back strengthening practices or light workouts) might retain your body shape to a certain extent, nutritious diets still play the most critical part.   

Indeed, vitamins and acids sustained in mollusks would provide your body with consistent support, which slows down the process of cell loss and help you speed up your recovery.

These substances are beneficial both during and after pregnancy, ensuring optimal physical contours for expectant mothers.


Benefits of Octopus for Pregnant Women

Is octopus high in mercury? Can you eat octopus while pregnant? This article has successfully addressed these two inquiries.

Though traces of mercurous particles are identified in octopodes, they are still an abundant source of vitamins and minerals, guaranteeing robust health vitality for both mothers and babies.

Please contact us if there are still questions. Our chat box is always available!

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